Best Practices of EHR Data Migration

EHR data migration can be a very daunting task whether you are moving to a web-based electronic health record or undertaking a straight EHR to EHR data migration.  That said, migrating to new EHR systems can help healthcare providers reduce costs, enhance security, and improve clinical decision-making.

Stanford’s National Physician Poll found 66% of healthcare providers are not satisfied with their existing EHR solution – which reinforces that data migration worries cannot be allowed to hold back your practice.

When you are starting the process of an EHR migration, follow these best practices below to make your migration process a success.

1. Understand, Choose and Evaluate Your Data Migration for EHR

Having a complete picture of your data and what you need to migrate is necessary for understanding and establishing a clear EHR data migration plan. From the very start, ask:

  1. Do you need to migrate all of your medical records or only the active patients from the last three years?  Older records, deceased records, and inactive records can be archived into a searchable PDF format for access if needed.  Knowing what the proper records retention rules are is critical.
  2. What data points will be transferred as discrete/searchable data versus non-discrete data?
  3. What format does your data need to be in for the new EHR system?


This is also a great time to clean up your data by merging duplicate records, completing incomplete ones, and signing and closing documents. It’s also a good opportunity to reduce digital clutter, as you can evaluate and clean up invalid data points that do not function correctly.

2. Scale Your Network

Depending on your EHR solutionsyou may need to update or enhance your hardware and software. Migration of EHR to cloud or onsite solutions have very different demands, for instance.

  1. Are you keeping all of your data onsite that will require an update to your client-server?
  2. Are you going to use a web-based EHR system?
    1. Migration of your EHR to a cloud system may have certain requirements for onsite computers that will access the system.
    2. Third-party applications may need to meet certain criteria to integrate with a cloud-based system.
    3. Equipment that needs to integrate with a cloud system may have to be updated.

3. Assess Operating System Requirements of the New EHR System

Determining the EHR migration pathto export and import data is essential, and will vary depending on whether you are an institutional healthcare provider or a small clinical practice. EHR migrations for hospitals have added complexity as there are no downtimes and everything has to be done during working hours.

  1. Are you going to need to increase your bandwidth to accommodate the EHR migration path and its strategy?
  2. Will data be migrating during working hours that will put an additional load on your system while you are also taking care of patients or are you able to do data extraction and imports during off-hours?

Data Migration for EHR

4. Sample Data Validation/Testing and Workflow Creation

All EHR data migrations will require a great deal of data validation and testing, and new workflow documents will have to be created too. Having an assigned and pre-planned EHR migration teamin place will be critical to the success of this area.

Assign specific staff to do the sample data validation and interface testing. Also, dedicate staff to be “super users” for the new EHR to create workflow documentation specific for your clinical environment.

Although billing data does not migrate, you will still need to ensure that you have adequate new workflows for your billing services and have a plan in place for accessing and working your “legacy” AR.

5. Final Migration

Be prepared with a backup plan if the final migration does not go as planned. That can mean having a detailed plan for reverting back, even if you are transitioning to

All EHR data migration services should have this built into their plan as well as a point of the migration when this will occur.

Make EHR Data Migration Seamless – With True North ITG

EHR data migration may not seem like a simple move from one to another.  but following the above EHR data migration best practices will help ensure your migration is a success.

EHR migration pricing can be a costly piece of any migration so unnecessary delays can make this endeavor even more expensive.

A partner like True North ITG helps you make sure your upgrade goes to plan and the safety and care of your patients are not affected during the transition. Take advantage of a proven track record of successful migrations, and make sure your EHR migration is completed on time and within budget.

Discuss your requirements with a specialist today and learn about our EHR data migration pricing.

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